Around 18 months, I decided to leave the world of woodworking blogs. When I made that choice, I also made my reasons clear. I will say it again and repeat myself in the process: Woodworking blogs are no longer about woodworking; they are political sound boards and SJW op eds. I did not want to be associated with that nonsense then, and I still don’t today. There were other reasons as well, but none so compelling.
Hell, maybe things have changed, but I doubt it, and I don’t care enough to look.
But, since I haven’t been blogging, I also haven’t been woodworking as often, and that has bothered me. My furniture making tools in many ways have become carpentry tools, and I am thankful for that because they are still very useful. My latest projects have all been homeowner related: installing a new attic door and trim, framing and trimming out for new attic windows, and most recently, converting my daughter’s bunk bed into a single, which was fun because I did it all with a hand saw, a chisel, and a cordless drill. But I hadn’t considered making any new furniture, that is until this past Saturday.
This past Saturday a local historic home was having a Colonial Fair (Colonial in the sense that its theme was mid-18th century America). The area of Pennsylvania where I live is rich in Colonial history, so these events are a pretty common occurrence in the region. Saturday was a nice day, and the fair was less than 10 minute drive away, so I decided to take my daughter to check it out. To make a long story short, I ended up at the Joiner’s tent, where a woodworker was demonstrating box making. He was very talented; I would mention his name but I don’t feel comfortable in doing so, nonetheless, his demonstration also included many nice examples of hardware, hinges, and colonial period locks that he makes. Not only that, he is also a very talented Windsor Chair builder. I ended up speaking with him for more than 30 minutes, and he genuinely seemed to enjoy the conversation. It got to the point that my daughter, who is much more patient than I was at her age, was tugging my arm, and I certainly didn’t want to monopolize the man’s time. It ended up being the nicest woodworking conversation I’ve had in a long time.
And, as often happens when speaking with a talented person, I picked up several nice ideas just by checking out his work. One of which was lining the interior/lids of small boxes and chests with period newspapers, which is right up my alley considering that one of my geeky hobbies is creating documents using authentic Colonial fonts and ‘laid’ style parchment paper.
So I would like to thank this ‘mystery’ woodworker for his time, and mostly for inspiring me to start making furniture again. For the first time in what seems like forever the topic of woodworking didn’t leave me wanting to throw my tools into a ravine; I’ll take that as a victory.